I completed my BFA at Queen’s in 2006. The BFA courses of study allowed me to explore and experiment across all media. The instruction by exceptional faculty provided me with inspirational training. I found my feet especially within the 3D and time-based departments, where I eventually focused. The faculty and technicians were supportive during every step of my projects, and helped me to build sculptural works in the wood and metal shops, as well as complicated molds for casting projects. I also benefitted greatly from the ability to take art history courses as well as courses in the film and history departments that further informed my research skills, theoretical and written work. Visiting artists to the University were exciting and inspiring, providing unique perspectives and motivation to further develop my artistic practice.
During my time in the program, I was involved with the Union Gallery as the Treasurer as well as the Chair of the Communications Committee. I also volunteered at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre as a student docent. These experiences taught me a great deal about working with the public and how to market and promote artistic practices. As well, I was able to exhibit my work across multiple venues in Kingston (including the Union Gallery, Agnes Etherington Art Centre and Modern Fuel ARC) giving me the confidence and experience necessary to pursue my practice beyond the undergraduate level. I have great memories of Kingston and the supportive community that surrounded the arts.
Following my graduation from Queen’s, I moved to London, UK and completed my Master’s of Fine Art at Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design. It was an intense program, but the BFA prepared me well to handle the workload. Following the course, I participated in international projects and residencies, including the Florence Trust Studio Residency Program, London, UK, the Château de la Napoule Art Foundation Residency in Mandelieu de la Napuole, France and at Casa Marles in Llorenc de Penedes, Catalunya, Spain. As well, I was living and working in London, UK, maintaining a studio practice and exhibiting while working for galleries, including White Cube, The Whitechapel Gallery and Pangolin London.
I returned to my hometown of Toronto, Ontario, at the end of 2009. I have since set up a studio in the city’s vibrant west end and am exhibiting across Canada. My studio practice focuses on the manipulation of light-hearted, playful and naïve elements to uncover narratives which are often more serious than the materials reveal. Executing works in the mediums of sculpture and installation, I manipulate materials, through construction, assembly and display in an effort to have the viewer to question their own thoughts and feelings. Largely, my practice utilizes the assumptions brought to specific materials – from sequins and sparkles to neon lights - in order to pose questions about how these over-the-top artificial surfaces drive visual association within social contexts.
At present, I work in marketing, graphic design and social media. I specialize in providing solutions to artists and galleries. Most recently, I am providing assistance to The Hazelton Hotel in Toronto’s Yorkville area as the Art Concierge and am launching the first “Hazelton Plinth Sculpture Contest.”
To see more of Sam Mogelonsky’s work.
The BFA at Queen’s was a unique program. The small size of it meant that as a student, you had a great amount of technical and theoretical assistance from the faculty and staff. As well, with fewer than thirty students in my year, we were able to form a tight-knit and supportive group. I can look back on these experiences and thank the BFA program for inspiring me with a deep love of sculpture and for giving me the tools I needed to make artwork at an international level.